If you have any tips, news, or content that you would like to see in the Springs Staff Scoop, please feel free to email Stephanie Keister.

The Power of Compound Interest

by Elizabeth Tice

Even though I’m now the Chief Operating Officer, I am still a numbers girl at heart.  Math has always been my friend!  One of the first action items John and I were able to execute together was the increase of the Company match (to our retirement plan) from 2.5% to 6%.  This excites me a great deal.  While I love my job and working with every one of you each day, I do think about my future.  Like many of you, I have dreams that, down the road, I may be able to retire and spend more time with my toes in the sand on a beach somewhere.  And that extra 3.5% company match, thanks to compound interest, will go far.

Compound interest is when you add the earned interest back into your principal balance, which then earns you even more interest, compounding your returns. Let’s say you have $1,000 in a savings account that earns 5% in annual interest. In year one, you’d earn $50, giving you a new balance of $1,050. In year two, you would earn 5% on the larger balance of $1,050, which is $52.50—giving you a new balance of $1,102.50 at the end of year two. The more you put towards savings, the more interest you earn, and the greater your savings grow.

(And yes, if I find a bank that offers 5% interest on savings accounts – I’ll let everyone know where it is!)

Where the impact of compound interest can be significant is in your retirement account, especially for our younger employees who may just be starting their careers and have decades ahead of them to continue to contribute.

Let’s look at Becky, who is 25 and a case manager that makes $45,000 per year. If Becky starts putting in 6% of her salary in order to receive the company match of 6%, that’s $5,400 per year going into her retirement fund.  If she were to receive an average raise of 4% per year and continued saving, with a modest 6% return, until the age of 65 – she would retire with slightly over $1.5 million.  If the company match had remained at 2.5%, her retirement fund at 65 would be about half a million less.

Even if you are closer to the end of your career, investing in the 403(b) plan can be a wise choice, as not participating essentially leaves 6% of your salary on the table.  And an added benefit of investing in a 403(b) plan is that it reduces your taxable income now.

Okay, here is the disclaimer our compliance folks likely want me to say.  I’m not a financial planner, just a numbers geek.  I can’t advise you on what you should or shouldn’t do with your personal finances.  But I do encourage you, if you have questions about the retirement plan, to reach out to One America, who can help you make informed choices that work for you!

They can be reached at 1-800-249-6269 or online at pages.oneamerica.com/mindsprings

Thank you to everyone who joined us in September for the Colorado West Pride Parade!

Looking forward to next year!

October Fun!

From pumpkin carving contests to chili cookoffs to trunk-or-treating at West Springs Hospital – lots of fun activities happened in October!

In Grand Junction, Joni Field won for the best Chili at their cookoff, while the following folks won prizes for the pumpkin carving contest:

  • Best Overall (prize golden pumpkin & $10 gift card) Michelle Huber & Ali  for Penelope the Perky Porcupine-nicely done on the use of toothpicks.
  • Most Adorable- (prize- Pumpkin cup) Melissa Sarno for Cheshire Cat
  • Best traditional- (Coffee mug with blanket) Bethany Salazar for Jack Snowman.
  • Most original (Coffee mug with candy) Beth Stith for Starry Nights
  • Silliest (Coffee mug with candy) Jenny Loos for Minion
  • Scariest (Coffee mug with candy) Rose and Liz  for Witches

In Glenwood Springs, there was a three-way tie between Kathy Fitzgerald, Danielle Hena, and Paula Young for their pumpkin carving contest.  Han’s pumpkin, with identifying post it note, was simply the sign of a Program Director with too many meetings!

PTO Winners – October

In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Mind Springs Health, one employee per month will be picked (via a random drawing) to receive a paid day off (to be used within 8 weeks of the date it’s awarded).  Our October winner of a PTO Day is Trent Brady, Clinician in Grand Junction!  We’ll announce TWO winners for November in early December.

Third Annual Pedal for Prevention a Success!

Thanks to all who joined!

You can check out this year’s photos on the Mind Springs Foundation website, here!

Join the Cultural Engagement Team!

Are you interested in helping our organization become more diverse and knowledgeable about equality and equity within our communities?

Please join the next CET meeting at 1:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 30

OR  . . .

Are you interested in sharing an experience or something you have learned?

Write a DEI piece for the Springs Staff Scoop!

 If you have any questions about the CET, please outreach Norma Roberts.  

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging

By Peggy Sammons, Program Director – Craig/Moffat County

Judy Singer, an Australian sociologist, is known for the non-medical term of Neuro-diversity. She first used the term in 1996 to describe people whose brain develops or works differently for some reason. It Is a cognitive/ natural variation in the human brain, such as sociability, learning, attention, and mood. One in five people are neuro-divergent. There are different strengths and struggles; talents and challenges; for people with (for example and not limited to) ADHD (attention-deficit/ hyper-activity disorder), Dyslexia, and ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder).

In the workplace, it is the idea of inclusivity that extends to neurological differences. Differences are why great things happen in the workplace. Mind Springs Health is an organization where employees feel comfortable and confident to discuss their challenges and can be themselves.

I recently talked to an employee that identifies herself with an ADHD diagnosis. She reports her biggest challenge is staying organized. She does use a planner, but that doesn’t always keep her organized. She said it helps her to plan ahead. She does not like being out of a routine. Another challenge is focusing. Movement helps her stay focused such as rocking in her chair or twirling a pen during meetings. She is better focused when someone talks fast. If someone talks slow, she does her best to not interrupt. She can become hyper-focused and is very productive. She is more sensitive to “quiet noise” over loud noise. Having a white noise machine outside her office door helps her to stay on task. This employee works mainly with children. Her strengths and talents are that she has a propensity for music and activities with a rhythm. She can play an instrument and/or sing the music after hearing a song; better than reading the music. She uses music when working with kids, because children are usually drawn to music.

A person that identifies themselves with Dyslexia may be challenged with spelling and proof reading, but because they process information visually they are often able to recognize patterns and see trends in data quickly. A person that identifies with ASD may be challenged with the social environment. They may work better from home. They may enjoy repetition or tasks that others may find monotonous.

Neuro- diversity is the idea that people experience and interact with the world around them in many different ways. These differences are not deficits. Most traits are present from birth and develop in childhood and adolescence. However, it is important to support employees through life events that may have caused a brain altering experience.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging are the four concepts that work together within our organization. Mind Springs Health is replacing negative stereotypes with valuing our employees’ gifts.